This weekend’s going to rock your veggie world, if you’re into that sorta thing! Veggie Prom is tonight, followed by a post-prom potluck picnic at Central Park. Finally, the Veggie Pride Parade rounds out the weekend Sunday starting at 11 a.m. in the Meatpacking district.
Hungry after all the parading, yes? Z Pizza‘s got vegan slices this weekend, starting today! That means no more staring in their window wishing you had friends to go in on a pie with you, and no aging pizza in your fridge. (But leftover pizza is the best, no joke!)
Jonathan Horowitz’s art exhibit at a former meat locker in the Village called “Go Vegan!” looks brilliant. Have you been? What’d ya think?
At least two carriage horses have crashed in the last two weeks, Gothamist reports. It’s been just a month since the City Council approved changes to the carriage horse industry that support more humane treatment of the horses, but the new legislation does nothing to protect horses from injury due to crashes. Hey, it looks like you can’t make carriage-hauling safe or humane for horses unless you eliminate it entirely. News. Flash.
The LA Times blog’s “L.A. Unleashed” column has a snappy animal round-up of its own: Labradoodle breeder’s regrets, gray whale in Israel, and researchers hurt mice to see the looks on their faces. Guh.
Remember when Compassion Over Killing encouraged us to enter Dunkin’ Donuts’s “Create Dunkin’s Next Donut Contest,” and asked us to share our vegan creations with them? They’ve picked their favorite 12 contestants’ dreamed-up sweets and will make one of those dreams come true! Vote for your favorite by next Friday, May 21 (and you’ll be entered to win one of 10 prizes, too). Vegan Treats will produce the winning doughnut, which will be announced in June. I will take a box of each!
The Supreme Court today struck down a law against selling videos that show animal cruelty, voting 8-1, the AP reported.
“The justices threw out the criminal conviction of Robert Stevens of Pittsville, Va., who was sentenced to three years in prison for videos he made about pit bull fights,” an AP reporter writes. “…Stevens ran a business and Web site that sold videos of pit bull fights. He is among a handful of people prosecuted under the animal cruelty law.”
According to the AP’s report, the assenting justices voted in favor of striking down the law, which was enacted in 1999 to prevent the making and selling of crush videos, to avoid limiting free speech. “[Chief Justice John] Roberts said the law could be read to allow the prosecution of the producers of films about hunting. And he scoffed at the administration’s assurances that it would only apply the law to depictions of extreme cruelty.”
Does it not violate the spirit of the constitution if free speech comes at the expense of life? And perhaps a ban on videos that glorify the cowardly practice of shooting an unarmed, unassuming creature with an automatic weapon is, in fact, a positive, if unpopular, application of the law.
The single dissenting judge, Justice Samuel Alito, told the AP that the ruling might spur a new wave of crush videos because it has “the practical effect of legalizing the sale of such videos.” That is not to mention the sale of dog-, cock-, and bull-fighting videos, all of which promote cruelty as sport.
Roberts implied that this might be an opportunity for lawmakers to draft new legislation that will specifically ban filming and selling crush videos and other depictions of “extreme” cruelty. But who decides what amount of cruelty is acceptable? To me and many readers of this blog, hunting, fishing, and even butchering and some cooking videos constitute irresponsible depiction of extreme, unnecessary cruelty and exploitation. As god-awful annoying as those Got Milk? commercials are insomuch as they bring to mind the miserable lives of dairy cows, I’m willing to concede that those less direct implications of animal cruelty needn’t be banned. But why must we recoil at the broader applications of a law that was apparently pointing us toward more aware and rational conclusions?
As of this decision, there is no protection for animals filmed being brutalized, and no punishment for those who profit off filming the brutalization of animals. Contact your representative to politely and firmly ask for a law that protects animals from starring in “films” depicting their own cruelty.
“This is the book I wish I had had to give the meat-eaters in my life so they would understand me, and how they and I could have such a different perspective on the same issue.” This statement from Melanie Joy about her new book, Why We Love Dogs, Eat Pigs, and Wear Cows: An Introduction to Carnism, might seem a little forward, but she’s right.
Before you roll your eyes and shrug carnism off as another “ism,” let Melanie explain it to you, which she does so eloquently in the interview below.
I will tell you that almost ten years ago, while I was editor of Satya Magazine, Melanie Joy submitted an article introducing the concept of carnism. She was working on her Ph.D. in psychology at the time and it was a little earnest and ambitious. Still, the editorial staff was intrigued and persuaded by her argument and we published it. I really wasn’t sure where the idea would go from there. Back then, she was arguing to restructure language. Now she’s talking about transforming our culture. And, again, she’s right.
Why We Love Dogs, Eat Pigs, and Wear Cows is an elegantly-written description of why people eat meat. The argument is subtle but her writing is very approachable, with a friendly tone and low on the use of academic jargon. For me, it’s the most thought-provoking book about how animals are perceived culturally since The Sexual Politics of Meat by Carol Adams (which had a big influence on me). I will leave it at that and let Melanie take it from here…
SV: Have you had any really surprising responses to your book so far? MJ: Yes. I’ve been on a couple of radio shows in the Southwest–”cattle country”–and the reception has been surprisingly positive. Carnists and hunters have called in saying they agree with the precedent of the book. They care about animals too and are against factory farms. A lot of mainstream meat-eating readers have responded positively.
Why DO we love dogs, eat pigs, and wear cows? Because the invisible system that I call “carnism” conditions us to love certain animals and eat others. Carnism teaches us not to feel when it comes to the animals we consume. Our natural way of responding to other animals appears to be based on empathy. One way we can see that: meat-eating societies around the world eat only a handful of species and find the idea of eating others disgusting. This is because carnism blocks our awareness and empathy when it comes to the species we have deemed edible. Continue Reading…
Tonight I bring to your attention Brendon, your bunny friend! He’s a three-year-old brown and white lop whose temporary home is Animal Care and Control of NYC in Manhattan, where he’s been living since March 9.
Lots of families adopt bunnies, especially around Easter, not realizing how much care they need. An ASPCA Animal Watch article on bunny care (PDF) recommends at least 30 hours a week of exercise time, not so different from dogs. Also like dogs, bunnies bred as companion animals have personalities, don’t necessarily like to be handled, and enjoy the warmth of a home. Misconceptions around those facts lead to many bunnies being abandoned at shelters this time of year.
Guys, a penis fact! Vegan Porn compared Condomania’s recently published penis size rankings to the population of vegans in U.S. cities, and GUESS WHAT THEY FOUND?*Vegan men have bigger cucumbers! THIS IS A TOTALLY ACCURATE, MATHEMATICAL, BIOLOGICALLY POSSIBLE CORRELATION SO STOP TELLING ME IT ISN’T TRUE/NOT REALLY WHAT THEY FOUND. Men: go vegan and your penis will grow. (Could it hurt? No. So DO IT.**) And I mean, who wouldn’t rather take it from a vegan, AM I RIGHT, LADIES?
Also in the long, enormous (can’t help myself) category of Environmental Consciousness Is Good for the Earth and My Sex Life and Your Bank Account and Kitties: Y’know how Nadya Suleman (God I hate to say it but you won’t know who I’m talking about unless I say it so I’m going to say it), Octomom, hasn’t paid for her house and faces a foreclosure lawsuit? And how EVERYONE and their DOG is offering her, uh, unconventional opportunities to earn some cash? Well! Thursday she accepted one such offer from PETA, who basically said, “Put this sign on your lawn and we’ll give you $5,000 and a month’s supply of veggie burgers and hot dogs. WIN-WIN!”
Now this woman is literally a postergirl for NOT reproducing. I just love when the figurative becomes the literal.
*OK, so really they said they couldn’t find a trend, but then realized most vegans are women, so: inconclusive project. But MAYBE!
**It’s not about the size of the tofu, but what you bake with it. NOW GO BAKE ME SOME SWEET, SWEET LOVIN.